Superstition is a pejorative term for belief in supernatural causality: that one event leads to the cause of another without any natural process linking the two events, such as astrology, religion, omens, witchcraft, etc., that contradicts natural science.
I am not highly superstitious but out of habit I am sure I do somethings that can be classified as superstitious like crossing my fingers for good luck or knocking on wood .
I know science is the key to the modern world but the fact remains that one can’t be free from superstitions. At times, even not believing in superstition could be based on superstition. I have talked about superstitions like Friday the 13th before in my post and we from time to time hear some weird superstition people believe in but today I would like to talk about the extremes people go to believing in these superstitions, that it is not healthy or logical to follow them.
In today’s scientific world, it is necessary that we do not blindly follow all the superstitions that were handed down to us by our ancestors. We are modern, both in our outlook and the age we are in. Therefore we should have a judicious look for some logical reason behind every superstition before accepting it. In Nepal there are many superstitions, which I believe had logic behind them in olden days.
No umbrellas inside
If you open, an umbrella inside you could poke someone’s eye out. If the umbrella is wet, then you are making mess inside.
Don’t sweep the house after sun set
It is logical as well as in olden days, they don’t have electricity so sweeping the house after sunset, you may not see the valuables on the floor and you may throw them out.
Women with period can’t do housework
In olden days, they didn’t have sanitary pads so women with period were considered dirty. Also women’s body is considerably weak during these time so it makes sense for them not to do too many things around the house due to hygienic reasons as well as so they can rest.
But there are many superstitions I don’t believe in like Bird Droppings on Your Head will bring you a good luck. No way, it will ruin my hair and I need a shower and that can’t be good luck in any form. A cat crossing one’s path will bring bad luck. In Sydney, many people have cats as pets that there will be some cats crossing your road every now and then so we can’t avoid it
There are many other Nepalese superstition that I don’t find logic in like:
- The sound of a crow near the surroundings or on somebody’s home forecasts the arriving of guests.
- A dog wailing nearby a sick person’s region forecasts his death or poor fate.
- There are a lot of beliefs related with beginning a travel. Sneezing or words of dissuasion suchlike “stop, do not go”, or “Why are you going? or “You shouldn’t go” used by chance by somebody at this important time are ominous things and a person should begin later if this befalls.
- Every day living is also regulated by do’s and don’ts for different days in a week.
- Monday – shouldn’t buy new clothes
- Tuesday – if you’re going out of town on Tuesday, you shouldn’t come back on Saturday
- Wednesday – you shouldn’t buy cooking oil
- Thursday – if you are a woman who’s not a widow, you shouldn’t wash your hair
- Friday – you shouldn’t eat meat
- Saturday – if you went out of town on Tuesday, you shouldn’t come back on Saturday
- Sunday – if you leave the house together as a trio, you shouldn’t be going your separate ways to separate places
- Any day – if you are going on a travel, do not clean, shower, do the laundry, or take stuff out to not bring it back
- Whenever there is itchiness in the palm of the right hand, it signifies luck and coming of money and the inverse holds for the left hand. This refers simply to the clean (right) and dirty (left) portions of the body.
- Ironically, quivering of the right eye lid is believed to be unfortunate and the blinking of the left eyelid is considered to be fortunate.
- If you have a bad dream, don’t mention it to anyone. Instead, when you go to the restroom, say whatever you saw in the dream out loud and it will be flushed off too.
- Seeing your teeth falling in your dreams is a bad omen.
- If you see someone dying in your dreams, that person will have a long life.
- If you give someone a handkerchief, you will be separated from that person.
- Ladies with small feet are thought to bring good luck wherever they go. (‘Lachhin’)
- If you see slippers or shoes turned upside down, it’s bad luck so you should right it immediately.
- If a crow crows near your window, you will hear bad news soon.
- Don’t play with fire or you’ll urinate in bed while sleeping.
- If you touch your neck with your fingers, you have to blow a puff of air on your fingers or else you’ll get a throat disease.
- If you unknowingly wear your clothes inside out, it brings good luck.
- Don’t lick cooking and serving spoons otherwise it will rain during your wedding. Either I or AS must have done it as it rained heavily during our wedding 🙂
I think people should believe in some logical superstition but as the times change, we should change as well like Don’t sweep the house after sun set would not be logical now as we have electricity. I am talking about all this because I know many educated people around me who follow this superstition and I wonder what they are thinking. Here are some examples.
- Someone I know broke up a relationship because a priest told him that if he marries that girl (his girlfriend of 3 years), he will die soon.
- Someone I know didn’t apply for a job for 2 weeks because a priest gave he a date and time to start applying for jobs. For me, it sounds so stupid because the later he applies the later he will get response and it will delay the whole process.
- Someone I know always asks the priest for auspicious time to do everything that he even asked him what time he should leave home to go to the airport to board an international flight. The priest gave him the time that was only 2 hours before his flight. Normally, it is a bit late because if you are caught in traffic, say goodbye to the flight but this person still followed the instruction.
- Someone I know didn’t buy his dream home just because the door was not facing the direction the priest had told him it should.
- I know someone who eats yogurt (believed to be auspicious) before starting any good things like going for job interview or going for exam. My question is if I don’t study for any exam and I just eat yogurt before the exam then will I pass?
- I know someone who never directly gives a knife or raw chilli to a person’s hand. She believes that it will bring bad luck in their relationship.
I personally believe that some of the superstitions are important and necessary but a majority of them are unwanted and are based on useless stuffs. One can believe and practice superstitions but excess of anything is harmful.
Do you believe in any superstition? Please share your experience.
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